Sunday, July 15, 2012

Red Sox Finish Strong To Win Series Over Rays (45-44)

Beckett settled down after the
first inning
The Red Sox continued their run of staying around .500 but yet in the thick of things as they moved within a game of the Rays today. They scored first in the first inning after a pair of one out walks. Adrian Gonzalez would deliver with a line drive into left for an RBI single to make it 1-0. However, the Rays answered in a big way in the bottom of the first-- putting runners at the corners with no outs. Ben Zobrist hit a hard liner off of Josh Beckett's glove and hustled out an infield hit to tie it at one. The Rays weren't done scoring though, as a few batters later a soft single to center by Desmond Jennings would give the Rays a 3-1 lead and it wasn't looking like Josh Beckett's best day. Luckily, Beckett didn't even have to work with a deficit for all that long as the Red Sox got right back to business in the second. After a one out single by Will Middlebrooks, Mike Aviles had the big blow with a two-run homer to center to make it 3-3.

Nava had the go-ahead home run
Both Josh Beckett and James Shields settled down from that point on, but neither was really good. That finally caught up to Shields in the fifth as Daniel Nava got ahold of an outside pitch, pulling it to right for a go ahead home run to make it 4-3. The Red Sox kept rolling right along in the fifth and proceeded to load the bases on two hits and a walk, with just one out. This time it was Will Middlebrooks with the big hit, as he singled hard up the middle to bring in two runs and give the Red Sox a comfortable 6-3 lead. After loading the bases with one out in the sixth, the Red Sox got some more insurance on a sacrifice fly by Cody Ross to make it 7-3. Beckett left after the sixth with a decent 6 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 7 K. The bullpen would hold the Rays and give the Red Sox a comfortable 7-3 win and a series win.

Bright Spots:
Josh Beckett- 6 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 7 K, W (5-7)
Mark Melancon- 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 K
Jacoby Ellsbury- 3-5, 1 R, 1 2B
Daniel Nava- 1-3, 2 R, 1 BB, 1 HR, 1 RBI
David Ortiz- 2-4, 1 BB
Adrian Gonzalez- 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI
Cody Ross- 1-4, 1 R, 1 RBI
Will Middlebrooks- 3-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI
Mike Aviles- 2-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI

Dull Spots:
Pedro Ciriaco- 0-4, 2 K, 4 LOB

Player of the Game:
Will Middlebrooks- Middlebrooks made more case for the Youkilis trade as he went 3-4 with a double, a run, and two RBIs-- he improved to .301/11/41 on the season.

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